AA 23  Daisy May Bates  Guide to Records
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Series AA23/01
Correspondence relating to Australian Anthropology
Date Range1912 - 1935
Quantity3 cm, 21 letters
ProvenanceDaisy May Bates
Description

This series comprises letters written by Daisy Bates to GW Gifford, Sir Edward Stirling, HM Hale, NB Tindale and JB Cleland between 1912 and 1933. This series includes typed copies of some of the letters, and typed extracts of others. The typing was apparently done by Museum personnel for ease of reference.The correspondence has been divided into three sub-series as follows:

AA 23/1/1 comprises eight letters written by Bates to GW Griffin between 1912-1918 while she was living in the Yalata area on South Australia's west coast.

AA 23/1/2 comprises one letter written by Bates to Sir Edward Stirling from Yalata Station on 7 January 1919.

AA 23/1/3 comprises eight letters written by Bates to HM Hale, NB Tindale and JB Cleland while she was living near Ooldea Siding on the East-West Railway line.

ArrangedSeries/Numerical

Inventory Listing

AA 23/1/1/1-13

Letters to CW Giffen

 

This sub-series consists of 12 letters written by Daisy Bates between 1912 and 1918 to CW Giffen in Adelaide, while she was camping in the Yalata area. These letters provide some information on the Aboriginal people of Fowlers Bay and the Nullarbor Plain and their mythology and rituals, subsistence techniques, trade and material culture. There are references to sites such as Wirilya (Wirilia), Yuria (Euria), Kooringabbie, Jeegala, Yalata, Yooldia (Ooldea), Ilgamba (Head of Bight), Winbera (Wynbring) and Boundary Dam, and accounts of the 'travelling corroborees' known as the Wanji-wanji and Molonglo which passed through the Fowlers Bay area while Bates was living there. Bates' letters also include detailed descriptions of the Aboriginal weapons, utensils and ceremonial objects that she was occasionally sending to Giffen. The letters also include references to Aboriginal people visiting Ooldea from the Musgrave and Everard Ranges in north-west South Australia, and Daisy's reminiscences of Aboriginal people she had worked with earlier in Western Australia, particularly the Kimberley and Perth regions.

These items include references to the following regions of South Australia: Nullarbor - Great Victoria Desert; North West.

This series includes references to: Western Australia; Northern Territory.

  Creator Daisy May Bates
Control AA 23/1/1/1-13
Date Range 1912 - 1918
Quantity 1 cm,
Formats General Correspondence
Inventory Identifier AA 23/1/1/1-13
Series AA23/01

AA23/1/2/1-2

Letter to Sir Edward Stirling

 

This sub-series comprises a letter from Daisy Bates to Sir Edward Stirling (see AA 309), dated 7 January 1919, written from 'Yulbari Native Camp' (near Yalata Station). The letter provides some information on the manufacture by a local Aboriginal woman of woollen caps ('tam-o-shanters') made from wombat fur. Bates also discusses her planned donation to the South Australian Museum of some stone artefacts and a collection of 'koondain' or tjuringa. The letter includes references to places in the far west of South Australia including Fowlers Bay, White Well Station, Boundary Dam, Ooldea and Euria. Note that there is another letter from Daisy Bates to Sir Edward Stirling, dated 20 January 1916, in NB Tindale's journal Ooldea 1951 Papers associated (AA 338/2/32).

These items include references to the following regions of South Australia: Nullarbor - Great Victoria Desert; North West.

This series includes references to: Western Australia; Northern Territory.

  Creator Daisy May Bates
Control AA23/1/2/1-2
Date Range 1919
Quantity 0.1 cm,
Formats General Correspondence
Inventory Identifier AA23/1/2/1-2
Series AA23/01

AA23/1/3/1-15

Letters to Hale, Tindale and Cleland

 

This sub-series comprises eight letters to HM Hale (see AA 124), NB Tindale (AA 338) and JB Cleland (see AA 60) written by Daisy Bates between 1930 and 1935, when she was living at Ooldea. These letters provide information on the Aboriginal people who had gathered at Ooldea after the construction of the East-West Railway, completed in 1917. The people who had gathered there came from the Nullarbor Plain and west coast to the south, from the Great Victoria Desert to the north and from the mountain ranges of central Australia. Bates provides details on many aspects of traditional Aboriginal culture, including language, totemic ceremonies, tribal boundaries and movements, mythology, trade, material culture, kinship and social organisation. Bates' letters include references to places on the Nullarbor Plain such as Eucla, Ilgamba (Head of Bight) and Kaldilyerra (Wilson Bluff flint mine) and places in the Great Victoria Desert including Ooldea, Wandunya (Waldana), Murgaru (Muckera), Boundary Dam and other locations in far west South Australia including Barton, Immarna and Tarcoola. In these letters Bates also refers to tribal/language groups from the Nullarbor/Fowlers Bay area such as the 'Yirkla Minning' (Mirning), 'Werungu' (Wirangu) and Wanmaring Wongga (Head of Bight) and desert groups such as Ngallia Wongga (Ngalia) and Jiwin Wongga (from the Ooldea area). There are also occasional references to the Aboriginal people of the Kimberley region of Western Australia, the Bibbulman people of south-west Western Australia and the 'Arrunda' (Arrernte) from Central Australia. Bates' letters also provide some information on the tjuringa and other items that she was sending to the South Australian Museum at that time.

These items include references to the following regions of South Australia: Nullarbor - Great Victoria Desert; North West.

This series includes references to: Western Australia; Northern Territory.

This series includes references to the following named groups: Werungu; Wanmaring Wongga; Ngallia Wongga; Jiwin Wongga; Bibbulman; Arrunda.

Tindale Tribes: Aranda; Mirning; Ngalea; Pibelmen; Wirangu.

These correspond to AIATSIS Language Groups: Arrernte; Bibbulman; Ngalea; Wirangu.

  Creator Daisy May Bates
Control AA23/1/3/1-15
Date Range 1930 - 1935
Quantity 1 cm,
Formats General Correspondence
Inventory Identifier AA23/1/3/1-15
Series AA23/01

AA23/1/4/1

Letter to Daisy Bates from Ludovic Mann

 

This sub-series comprises one letter to Daisy Bates from Ludovic Mann in Glasgow, UK, dated 22 November 1932, seeking information on Aboriginal use of stone axes and boomerangs.

  Creator Daisy May Bates
Control AA23/1/4/1
Date Range 1932
Quantity 0.1 cm,
Formats General Correspondence
Inventory Identifier AA23/1/4/1
Series AA23/01